LIMA — How much are those advanced safety features found in new vehicles worth?
A recent AAA study suggests Advanced Driver Assistance Systems – used for automatic emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring and other safety features common in new vehicle models – may cost consumers thousands of dollars to repair, even in the event of a minor collision.
ADAS sensors help detect objects outside a vehicle, but research from AAA suggests consumers are unfamiliar with how these technologies function and their true cost.
Last fall, AAA tried to calculate the true cost to fix or replace ADAS sensors. The study focused on three popular vehicles: the 2018 Nissan Rogue, 2018 Toyota Camry and 2019 Ford F-150. The agency then asked two main questions: How much more will it cost to repair specific ADAS sensors, and what is the cost to replace a windshield with an ADAS sensor located behind it?
The results suggest drivers of these vehicles may be paying as much as an additional $3,000 to repair their vehicles when an ADAS sensor is damaged and needs recalibrated or reset.
“It’s critical that drivers understand what technology their vehicle has, how it performs and how much it could cost to repair should something happen,” said John Nielsen, AAA’s managing director of Automotive Engineering and Repair.
Take replacing a windshield. AAA estimates more than 14.5 million windshields are replaced each year. But since many ADAS sensors are positioned behind the vehicle’s windshield, repair becomes more complicated and costly. The report found that replacing a windshield with an ADAS camera located behind the glass costs about $1,500, or about three times what it would cost to replace a windshield without an ADAS camera.
Finding a repair shop capable of recalibrating ADAS sensors may be difficult.
“Simply replacing sensors is relatively straightforward and can be performed by most automotive technicians,” AAA said in its analysis. “However, to restore the system to the proper operation it must be calibrated, which requires special training, tools and information.”
The agency is encouraging consumers to learn more about these technologies when shopping for new vehicles, insurance policies or repair shops.